South Dallas Rapist Gets Life in Prison for 2013 Serial Attacks

The man who menaced South Dallas with a series of sexual assaults over the summer of 2013 will spend at least the next 30 years in prison.

Van Dralan Dixson, captured in Baton Rouge in September 2013, attacked women at night. Carrying a gun he said he used to do his part in a neighborhood crime watch, Dixson approached women in the early morning hours, pulled his gun and forced them to perform oral sex at gunpoint.

The first victim recorded in a police timeline released after Dixson was arrested was attacked on June 22. It would take until September 3, for DPD to announce that they believed there was a serial rapist at work in South Dallas. By that point, police believe Dixson had committed nine attacks.

As news of the rapes broke, the South Dallas community hit by Dixson reacted angrily to what they believed was a slow response from police. In the face of that anger, police Chief David Brown tweeted out the name of another man as a person of interest in the crimes. Brown was roundly criticized after the man he named was cleared of any involvement.

Dixson pleaded guilty Friday afternoon to four of the sexual assaults and two counts of armed robbery in order to receive a life sentence with the possibility of parole in 30 years.

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Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014. He's a Dallas native and a graduate of the University of North Texas.
Contact: Stephen Young